AN: Here we are! Finally. As this is a sequel, I would recommend that you read A Time Once Lost as there is a lot of background that is fairly important in establishing Link and Zelda's relationship. I reckon that this can be enjoyed on its own as well, but there may be some parts that refer back to A Time Once Lost. I'll try to flag those up when and where they appear. I'm also basing this on the extra end story in the Majora's Mask manga. It gives an interesting perspective to Majora's origin, so I would recommend you check it out :). Without further ado, here we go! Perfect Soldier 01
By Perfect Soldier 01
Chapter 1: Losing You
It is an accursed item that is said to have been used by an ancient tribe in its hexing rituals. They say that an evil and wicked power is bestowed upon the one who wears that mask.
According to legend... the troubles caused by Majora's Mask were so great that the ancient ones, fearing such catastrophe, sealed the mask in shadow forever, preventing its misuse.
But now that tribe from the legend has vanished, so no one really knows the true nature of the mask's power...
...But I feel it.
"Those words chilled me to the very bone."
Link's eyes rose from the floor to some indistinct point near my knees. He wrung his hands together, fidgeting with his gauntlets, and he heaved another sigh.
"I will never forget what he told me that day. There was something about that man's eyes…they were frighteningly sincere." He paused and looked at me directly, his gaze piercing the air in-between us. "I mean, he knew what the mask held in store for him, but still…he searched for it relentlessly. I never knew what became of him. When it was all over he disappeared."
Link leaned back in his chair, looking out towards the window. The sunlight glossed over his skin, shining for mere seconds in the golden tufts of his hair. I watched him silently, reflecting on that moment when we said our farewells on that day seven years ago.
He had looked away in the same manner, his eyes slightly more downcast, but the tilt of his face was the same. Now his features had matured and were altogether more refined, like that of a true Hylian. But just as it was then, I could still tell when his calm voice betrayed him. A certain restless discontentment always hovered around his words like a moth drawn to a flame.
Link turned his head and retreated back into the shade of the room, breaking the spell of nostalgia as he resumed his story. "That man had no interest in any of the other masks I found, not even the Fierce Deity Mask. It was just as powerful, more so perhaps."
"And he still didn't want it?" I asked.
"None of them seemed to be worth anything. I remember when I held that mask in my hands; it had the same, what's the word…ominous feeling. It was almost as if they were two of a kind, those masks."
I leant backward, contemplating the information once more. I had become fascinated with Link's masks ever since he had recounted his adventures in Termina to me; they were like nothing I had ever seen before. He had been kind enough to indulge my curiosity for a while, letting me try them on and proving to me that one really could make you stay awake all night…
It had been innocent enough, but then I had stumbled across the masks that could change Link into something else. He had been reluctant to show these to me, but had practically forbidden me to even touch the Fierce Deity Mask. I could immediately sense a sinister presence in each of them, but none so potent as the Fierce Deity. Just looking at it would make me feel uneasy, as if the air was gathering around my throat and preventing my breath from escaping.
Yet it was that fear that had drawn me toward it. The more Link refused to talk about it, the more intrigued I became, and so I kept pressing him for more details until he finally yielded to my plea. I wanted to believe that it was not a malicious mask, but I could not ignore the bitter resentment that seemed to seep out of its blank eyes.
I suddenly realised that I had been quiet for a long time, and I leant forward, resting my elbows on my knees and pressed my knuckles across my mouth.
I looked at Link seriously, but I knew that he could predict my question before I had even gathered the words together. The corners of his mouth drooped ever so slightly, his lips parting anxiously as his eyes loosened the frown into a more concerned puzzlement.
"Can I see it again?" I asked tentatively.
He held in a sigh, which was more than enough confirmation for me. He gazed at me for a brief moment, silently asking me whether I was really certain about this. I half smiled at him, and he stood up and retrieved the mask from a drawer in his desk. At once the air thickened and I tried not to let a shiver run over my skin.
He placed it in my hands, his fingers lingering against mine as the exchange took place. I also delayed bringing the mask down to my lap, and I wanted our touch to reassure him that there was no need to be so wary about this harmless object. Our eyes caught each other as we both noticed the prolonged changing of hands, and I hoped that his small smile was a sign of his accepting my wish.
I looked down into its blind, white eyes as Link returned to his chair. I almost felt nervous scrutinising its plain face like this, as though I was being examined myself. The mask had a smooth surface and the contours were gentle. The red and blue markings bore no texture and were as polished as the rest of the surface. The inside of the mask was no different. It was truly a rather unremarkable piece of work. Even so, there was something captivating about its face, how its eyes drew your gaze and held you suspended in time and space…
"Zelda," Link said, breaking my concentration.
Suddenly I realised that I had forgotten where I was and that Link's voice had practically woken me out of something like a trance. I had to tear my eyes away from it and I pushed it back into Link's hands. He set it aside on the desk behind him and took my hands in his.
"Are you all right? You had a strange look on your face."
"I-I'm fine," I said hurriedly, trying to compose myself.
The sun unexpectedly flashed in my eyes and I shied away from the blinding light, but Link rested his forehead against mine, enclosing us in his shadow. I closed my eyes as I let his lips float over mine, momentarily forgetting how uncomfortable I had just felt. He kissed me gently, sweeping me away from this world again into a disorientating haze of pleasure. I envied how he was able to pick these moments with such perfect precision. He never seemed to get it wrong.
"Are you sure you're all right?" he said, his breath warm against my skin.
"Of course," I replied against his mouth, wanting to continue for a little longer to completely eradicate the unsettling atmosphere that still emanated from the mask.
I kissed him again, but he quickly turned away, his gaze settling on the mask.
"I wonder whether it would feel the same…" he said absentmindedly.
"Feel like what?" I exclaimed, slightly bewildered at the strange remark. "Are my kisses not good enough for you?" I teased mockingly.
He blinked and shot me a glance of embarrassment. "No, no!" he said, trying to laugh it off. "I love your kisses." And he drew another from the well of my mouth, each corner of our lips curling into a grin.
"What I meant, o devil of mine, was whether it would feel the same to put the mask on again."
"Of course," I said arching my eyebrow in mock disbelief.
"I'm being perfectly serious!" he cried, trying to banish the teasing smile from his face. He picked up the mask and held it in front of his face. "This is what I would look like. Imagine me now but with this face."
I tried, and his hair and clothes somewhat suited the mask's features. The shape of its face was very similar to Link's, and I had a picture in my mind of what he might possibly look like… But I could not shake how terrible it would be if Link lost the brilliant blue of his eyes. The mask's eyes were soulless, cruel and unfeeling… everything that Link's eyes were not.
"Put it a little closer," I said. "It's a little too far away." I reached out toward him and gently pushed his forearms back a fraction. There, just there, I could see what Link would become. I gasped inwardly and averted my gaze. To think that he would be looking at me out of those cold, white eyes…it made me feel repulsed.
"Put it away, Link. I can't bear to - "
It was only for a moment, a few seconds perhaps, but that small movement, that slight shift of my hands against him, had not stopped. Before I could grasp the tips of his fingers curled around the mask's edge he had completely encompassed his face. A sudden lurch of Link's body threw him back in his chair and a searing shriek burst from inside him.
The pulsating shudder of the mask's power reverberated through to the core of my bones, and a bright light surrounded his cruciform figure, stealing him away from my sight. I screamed his name, my limbs paralysed by an overwhelming terror, but my voice was silenced in Link's warped cry and it became lost in the deeper, almost inhuman screech.
The light then shot forward, the force shoving me down to the flagstones like the brute kick of a horse. I could barely breathe but I snapped my head up, staring in fright at what awaited me behind that white curtain. I held my breath as everything vanished away into nothing, and even though all was quiet that horrible noise was still throbbing through my head.
Daring to lift my gaze over the whole of its stature, I could not even form the shape of Link's name in my mouth. What stood before me was not Link, in any shape or form.
"You," he barked ferociously, narrowing his imperious glare. "Get up."
I didn't move. He roared with fury and kicked away the chair that lay between us. "Get up, NOW!" Taking one giant stride toward me, he seized my arm and yanked me up from the floor single-handedly, the clattering crash of the chair ringing in my ears. He tossed me away like a rag doll. "Tell me where he is, you worthless mortal!"
I could only stare at him in shock. "Do I have to repeat myself? WHERE IS HE?"
"W-Where is who?" I somehow managed to mumble.
He vented an angry sigh, his hands twitching with rage. "You're wasting my time!"
Before I could utter another word he had slammed the door and was gone, leaving me numb and alone in Link's chamber.
AN: Who is Fierce Deity talking about? What in Din's name is going on? Answers will be coming shortly! As always, please review:D I really appreciate your views and comments! Until the next chapter Perfect Soldier 01